Q – Give our readers an introduction to your business. What is your business all about?
The Yoga Center Retreat is a woman-owned business focused on yoga, wellness and
cultivating community. Our innovative programming provides high quality teachings
from faculty that are yogi experts in their fields. While we started by offering in person classes only, we now have grown our student yoga community through our online live yoga classes, workshops, and yoga teacher trainings.
Q – Give us a brief description about yourself and some of your major achievements.
I have been running Yoga and Wellness successful businesses since 2000 with over 2000 hours in training. I consider myself a teacher and business owner all in one. One of my more successful accomplishments was opening a new business to make good on a partner bankruptcy. By doing the right thing, I came out a stronger businesswoman.
Q – What inspired you to start a new business venture? How did the idea for your business come about?
After suffering eight miscarriages and surviving a bout with cancer, I suffered from severe anxiety disorder. Yoga was one of the prescribed things for my healing. After 6 months of yoga classes several times a week, I was cured of severe anxiety and knew I had to bring yoga to the world.
Yoga changed my life. In 1999, I knew that I wanted to make it accessible to all. That was my true inspiration. Also, I was inspired to create jobs for others and continue to create businesses within a business.
Q – What advice would you give to budding entrepreneurs?
Business is about relationships. Cultivate and take care of them the best you can.
Q – What would you say are the top three or more skills needed to be a successful entrepreneur?
Strong relationship-building skills, the ability to critically think and to see the big picture, the ability to learn from your mistakes, and determination not to give up.
Q – How many hours do you work a day on average?
12 hrs., 7 days a week
Q – To what do you most attribute your success?
My ability to be nimble and pivot programming to meet the needs of the students.
Q – How do you go about marketing your business? What has been your most successful form of marketing?
Word of mouth is the most successful form of marketing. We also use social media and flyers around town. When social media works it is very successful.
Q – Where did your organization’s funding/capital come from and how did you go about getting it? How did you obtain investors for your venture?
All investors for this venture came from people who have passion for the experiences in our yoga community. They all came to me wanting to be a part of this community.
Q – What is the best way to achieve long-term success?
To continue to add to the foundation of what you built and to continue engaging and growing the community. Do not get stuck in old ways of doing things.
Q – Where do you see yourself and your business in 5 – 10 years?
I see myself being able to teach more and run the business less. The business I see tripling
the community and continuing to provide what is needed.
Q – Excluding yours, what company or business do you admire the most?
I really admire Travail Kitchen and Amusements.
Q – How important have good employees been to your success?
Q – How long do you stick with an idea before giving up?
Generally, we watch the programs about 6 months.
Q – What motivates you?
The relationships built in the business and the community.
Q – How do you generate new ideas?
I listen to our students and pay attention to what is needed in our world.
Q – How do you define success?
By building a thriving community that is moved to support the business and continue to
invest in its success.
Q – What is your favorite aspect of being an entrepreneur?
Being able to be creative and have an avenue to share it with others. Also, the relationships that are built.
Q – What kind of culture exists in your organization? How did you establish this tone and why did you institute this culture?
By having each other backs, listening and trying to see where people’s talents are, we have created a really caring culture between teachers and staff. We also attract teachers and staff that know they can be successful within our organizational culture.
Q – In one word, characterize your life as an entrepreneur.
Q – If you had the chance to start your career over again, what would you do differently?
I would take things less personally and trust my intuition more.
Q – How has being an entrepreneur affected your family life?
It has created a family that is truly co-parented. My kids have seen what hard work and
true passion can do.
Q – What is your greatest fear, and how do you manage fear?
People will not come or connect with what we are offering. I manage this by talking with people and staying connected.
Q – How did you decide on the location for your business?
We wanted to be in the city of St Louis Park, a first ring suburb of Minneapolis in Minnesota, because it is an active community. We chose the wide-open warehouse space because we could build it out how we wanted with our retail area, spa area, yoga classrooms and more while paying less rent.
Q – What are some of the biggest mistakes you have made?
Not trusting myself and letting others rain on my parade.
Q – How can you prevent mistakes or do damage control?
Communicate effectively and self-care.
Q – What are your hobbies? What do you do in your non-work time?
Puzzles, spend time with my family, yoga, meditation
Q – What makes you happy?
Family, friends, sushi, animals
Q – What sacrifices have you had to make to be a successful entrepreneur?
Lack of sleep and sanity! Plus missing some friends and family obligations.
For more information visit us at www.theyogacenterretreat.com